Cappella delle Suore Sacramentine di Bergamo a Primavalle is a later 20th century former convent and school chapel at Via Gerolamo Seripando 13 in the Primavalle quarter.

There is a possibility that this chapel has been deconsecrated.

History Edit

The "Sacramentine Sisters of Bergamo" (Suore Sacramentine di Bergamo) had their remote origins at Bergamo in 1882, when a convent was founded for the primary purpose of Eucharistic adoration. The founders were SS Francesco Spinelli and Geltrude Comensoli. The education of girls was entered into as a means of earning a living and justifying the existence of the congregation in secular law.

Very unfortunately, Spinelli went bankrupt in 1889 and this led to the seizure of the convent's assets as well as a massive argument. He took refuge in Rivolta d'Adda near Cremona with some of then nuns loyal to him, and this meant a definitive split in the nascent congregation. Those left behind in Bergamo with St Geltrude became the Suore Sacramentine, while those near Cremona became the Suore Adoratrici (see Cappella delle Suore Adoratrici del Santissimo Sacramento.)

The Sacramentine congregation survived and prospered. As a result it received papal approval in 1900, removing it from the authority of the city's bishop. This was because it had started to establish itself in other countries besides Italy, founding convents in Latin America and (later) Africa.

The sisters established a large school and convent in Primavalle in the Sixties, by the look of the style. If this was the Generalate erected to replace the mother house at Bergamo, they are being quiet about it.

The convent and school were shut down recently, although without publicity, and the Generalate is now back in Bergamo with the Italian provinces consolidated into one.

In Rome, the congregation runs a school at Via Corridonia 40 in the San Basilio suburb, has a casa per ferie at Largo Geltrude Comensoli 2 (named after the foundress, and apparently the former Roman province's headquarters) and has the headquarters of the present Italian province at Via Ignazio Ciampi 6. None of these has any interest architecturally.

Appearance Edit

The complex is an ugly flat-roofed Modernist ensemble, having a two-storey core in the plan of a H perpendicular to the street and a three-storey wing running from the bottom right hand end of the H along the street. The fabric has a reinforced concrete frame left exposed, with pink brick infill.

The chapel occupies the crossbar of the H, and (very surprisingly) has a dome which can be glimpsed here and there in the otherwise very boring locality. The chapel itself is one-storey, and is fronted by an entrance lobby for the complex which is accessed by a flight of stairs (hinting that the chapel has a crypt). The dome has a fairly high drum, consisting of ten white concrete piers separated by large windows. They support a tall truncated conical dome in twenty greenish-grey anodised metal sheets, which sits on a dark grey concrete ring beam. The lantern on the top sits on a ring of twenty small window slots, and is a concrete cylinder bearing ten vertical concrete rods which float. There is a ball-and-cross finial.

External links Edit

Congregation's website

Info.roma web-page

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